published Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

Ringgold's Brooks Thomas third at 73 in state

  • photo
    Dalton's High School's Patrick Sims watches his drive in this file photo.
    Photo by Robin Rudd /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Augusta is the center of golf for one week in April for the Masters.

It became the center of Georgia high school golf Monday with 10 classification championships being determined on 10 courses within Richmond County.

"There's no doubt it felt pretty special to be down there," Dalton boys' coach Chad Jordan said. "There were teams from across the state that were playing on almost every course in the county."

Seven teams from northwestern Georgia competed with state titles on the line. None them pulled off upset victories, but they all played well.

"Having their name announced before they tee off is something pretty neat," North Murray coach Keith Robinette said. "It's cool hearing, 'Brandon Parrish, North Murray High School,' then the sound of his driver."

Dalton senior Brendie Rockholt and Ringgold junior Brooks Thomas had the best rounds among area individuals. Rockholt was the Class AAA girls' medalist with a 6-over 78, and Thomas shot a 1-over 73 to finish third in Class AAA boys after beginning his round with a double-bogey and then a bogey.

"A lot of kids start like that and they're done for the day," Tigers coach David Gann said. "He was low man in the clubhouse for a long time, and we thought he had a chance to win. Then a couple kids came in lower than him."

Kevin Gann was 12th with a 77 for Ringgold, which finished eighth out of 16 teams. And this was not the Tigers' first state tournament, as was previously reported.

Jordan's Catamounts finished in sixth place with McLean Davies and Patrick Sims shooting 78s.

"The first two teams separated themselves from the pack, and it was a battle for third," said Jordan, whose team shot 321 and couldn't challenge Gainesville's 296. "I think we're pretty pleased."

North Murray's boys placed fifth in Class AA at 321 with Parrish shooting 77 and Colby Hipp and Ryan Ensley each shooting 79 in the Mountaineers' first state tournament.

"We're a few strokes better than that, but I don't know if we're good enough to get all the way down to the 303 that North Oconee shot," Robinette said.

"Everything you do in the season can't really prepare you for the state tournament, but we enjoyed it. We went and looked down Magnolia Lane [at the site of the Masters]."

The Lady Mountaineers finished sixth at 179 with Jocelyn Blair leading at 9-over 81. Greater Atlanta Christian shot a 3-over 147 to win.

Calhoun tied for fourth with Kailey Duda scoring an 84 and Kaitlyn Smith shooting 85.

"It's not quite what we were hoping for," Calhoun coach Clay Stevenson said. "But when I look at the scores, third is the best we could have done because the top two ran away."

about David Uchiyama...

David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...

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